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Maintaining a beautifully aligned smile is an achievement worth celebrating. After the hard work put into braces, Invisalign, or other orthodontic treatments, the next crucial step in preserving that perfect smile is the use of retainers. At Cronin & Czarnik Orthodontics, we understand the significance of retainers in achieving long-lasting results and a healthy, confident grin. In this blog post, we’ll delve into why retainers are essential, the various types available, and how they play a crucial role in your orthodontic journey.

The Importance of Retainers:

Stability Matters:

After completing orthodontic treatment, your teeth are in a state of transition. They have been moved to their desired positions, but the surrounding tissues, muscles, and bones need time to adjust and stabilize. Retainers act as a security measure, preventing any unwanted shifting and maintaining the new alignment achieved through orthodontic treatment.

Preventing Relapse:

Without the use of retainers, there is a risk of orthodontic relapse, where teeth gradually revert to their previous misaligned positions. Retainers help safeguard against this regression, ensuring that your investment in a beautiful smile remains intact.

Guiding Emerging Teeth:

For those still in the growth phase, retainers play a vital role in guiding emerging teeth into their proper positions. This proactive approach ensures that potential alignment issues are addressed early on, reducing the need for extensive orthodontic interventions in the future.

Types of Retainers:

Hawley Retainers:


These retainers consist of a plastic base that sits against the roof of the mouth and a wire that runs across the front of the teeth. Hawley retainers are easily adjustable and can be customized with different colors and designs.

Clear Retainers:


Clear retainers, also known as Essix retainers, are often favored for their discreet appearance. Made from a transparent plastic material, they are practically invisible when worn. Clear retainers are custom-fit to your teeth and offer a seamless way to maintain your smile.

Fixed Retainers:

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Unlike removable retainers, fixed retainers are bonded to the back of the front teeth. This type of retainer is a great option for individuals who may find it challenging to consistently wear removable retainers.

Do I Need to Replace My Retainer if it Gets Lost or Broken?

If you lost or break your retainer, it is extremely important to replace it as soon as possible. If you don’t replace it, the teeth will shift back to their original position and once again need orthodontic treatment to be fixed. Even waiting as long as a week could be enough to cause significant tooth movement, to the point where the old retainer doesn’t fit correctly.


At Cronin & Czarnik Orthodontics, we recognize that each patient’s orthodontic journey is unique. Retainers play a pivotal role in ensuring the longevity of your beautiful smile, and choosing the right type is crucial. We believe that your treatment needs to be tailored to your specific needs. Certain retainers are better for certain patients. Dr. Carolyn Cronin and Dr. Scott Czarnik will use their years of experience and expertise to help prescribe what is best to protect your smile.

If you have any questions about retainers or if you’re interested in learning more about orthodontic options, we invite you to reach out to us for a complimentary consultation. Our team is dedicated to providing personalized care and guiding you towards a lifetime of confident smiles. Don’t hesitate to take the next step in your orthodontic adventure – we’re here to help you every step of the way.

Call or Text 303-428-3613 today!

Cronin & Czarnik Orthodontics

Author Cronin & Czarnik Orthodontics

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